Stack is the new Platform
The other week I was discussing some Internet of Things (IoT) related topics with my colleagues. Part of the discussion was on how to name the elements that make up an IoT solution. Not the specifics on functionality of the elements but how to name the set.
Platform is something that comes by a lot, but mainly as one of the elements (for example a data storage platform). Stack is the other word we used to describe the set of elements: the IoT stack.
A lot of people in the discussion including me were in favour of the word “stack”. Reading articles here and there we find “stack” and “platform” being used in all kinds of contexts. Sometimes even in the same sentence: “Microsoft Azure Stack is a new hybrid cloud platform product” or we find questions as “What is a good/scalable tech stack to use for cross platform messaging service?”. In the Business Intelligence world we see the Hadoop stack from Sprak on a IBM Big Data and Analytics platform. So we see stacks running on platforms but also the term “cross-platform” makes an appearance. Apparently we can use a stack on different platforms. This brief research gives the impression that a stack is not a platform.
Let’s take a look at definitions before we proceed: [...]
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